31st March 2014 - Principal calls for intensive public education to counteract the scourge of cyber bullying

Principal teachers say that if we are serious about addressing the plague of bullying, particularly through social media, dedicated resources need to be put in place. It is clear that many parents don’t understand how cyber bullying works and a clever campaign of public education is required

Principal teacher of St. Joseph's Co-ed. in East Wall, Dublin 3 Niall Heneghan said, ‘It is all very well to say that schools have a role to play in dealing with bullying that commences outside of school but schools don’t have the control on their own to deal with such instances, particularly if you bear in mind that in seven out of ten schools the principal is a full time class teacher. Principals are first to support any initiative that addresses bullying behaviour, but  converting  policy in to practice  where schools have virtually no capacity must be considered. There is a limit to the extent in which schools can solve the ills of society’

The Irish Primary Principals Network (IPPN) said yesterday that they are contacting Irish based multinational IT companies with an invitation to come together to utilise their corporate social responsibility programmes towards the eradication of cyber bullying.

Speaking on behalf of  IPPN, Seán Cottrell, Director, hopes that ‘the various interested parties, parents, principal teachers, students and multinational IT Companies, would agree to establish a working group to develop a strategy:

  • For a multifaceted, intensive campaign of public education;
  • To provide real and accessible opportunities for parents to understand and learn how these technologies work;
  • To provide parents with the language needed to talk to their children about cyber bullying and other related matters

The Irish Primary Principals’ Network (IPPN) is the officially recognised professional body for the leaders of Irish Primary schools. IPPN is a self funding, not-for-profit voluntary organisation with a local, regional and national presence.

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